B2B Marketing: To Chat Or Not To Chat?

Live chat support has become an essential part of B2B marketing because it allows businesses to have real-time conversations with customers. This interactivity can help to build more meaningful relationships, which leads to higher customer satisfaction. However, leveraging chat on your website is not as simple as selecting and installing a chat widget. In this article, we’ll cover the benefits of B2B chat and four reasons why chat might not be right for your business (yet).

 

The Benefits of Chat

With its ability to enable real-time conversations, live chat provides a fast and convenient way to communicate with your target audience. In fact, 79% of customers prefer live chat to any other communication medium. It is increasingly becoming the go-to customer service tool for the many benefits it offers B2B marketers, including: 

Increased Conversion Rates 

Live chat allows website visitors to get their questions answered quickly and easily, helping to reduce friction during the buyer’s journey. In fact, research has shown that businesses that use live chat convert more than double the number of leads than those who don’t use it. Customers are more likely to stay on your website when they have access to quick support, which can help increase conversion rates significantly. 

Greater Customer Satisfaction 

Live chat offers customers an immediate response from your team, regardless of when they need an answer. This allows you to create an experience that meets customer expectations and keeps them satisfied with the quality of service they receive from you. Studies show that 51% of consumers are more likely to buy from a company again if they offer live chat support

Automated Sales Cycle 

Another great benefit of using live chat is the ability to automate parts of your sales cycle. Automation allows brands to customize messages using detected online behavior. Based on the pages viewed or links clicked, customer needs can be anticipated and automated messages can pop up, lighting the path to the next step in the buyer’s journey. This helps streamline the sales process, and simplifies tasks for both you and the customer in order to achieve better results faster. 

Better Website Experience

With its average response time of just 30 seconds or less, live chat ensures that all inquiries are answered quickly and efficiently. Customers are able to access information in a few seconds and  with minimal effort, making it easier to navigate the website and creating a better user experience.

 

Four Reasons Chat May Not Be Right For Your B2B Business

Live chat is becoming an increasingly popular tool for businesses looking to improve customer service and increase sales. After all, it’s much more efficient to talk with customers in real-time than it is to wait days for an email response. Additionally, live chat is the communication method that most customers prefer. According to Kayako, customers rank live chat as the most popular channel or tactic for contacting customer service, with 41% of customers preferring live chat support over any other customer service communication method. However, while the benefits of live chat are numerous, they can only be realized when live chat is executed correctly. Before you add live chat to your website, take some time to understand the four main barriers that may keep your business from having success with this tactic. Let’s take a look at what the barriers are, and how you can overcome them. 

 

1. Minimum Site Speed Requirements 

If your website isn’t up to speed, you won’t be able to take advantage of live chat. The minimum site speed requirement for live chat depends on the provider you choose, but often falls between one to three seconds. If your site doesn’t meet this requirement, then there will be delays in response time, which can lead to frustrated customers. Therefore, it is important that you check your page loading times before committing to any live chat provider. 

 

Conversely, the live chat platform you choose can impact Google’s Core Web Vitals metrics, like Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), First Input Delay (FID), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS). Since both page speed and on-page experience are important ranking signals for your site, you need to think carefully about the impact live chat will have on your Core Web Vitals.

 

2. Strategy

Implementing a successful strategy for utilizing live chat requires careful planning and execution. You should have a clear plan of action for how you will use live chat on your website, and what goals you are hoping to achieve through its use. This includes deciding who will answer questions and how quickly responses should be provided. It should also include the objective of the live chat conversations and what topics should or shouldn’t be discussed with customers. Without a strategy in place, your team may not know how best to utilize the platform or how they should prioritize customer conversations. 

 

3. Website Security 

Customer data security is an incredibly important concern when implementing any technology onto a website, including live chat platforms. Before launching any type of online technology, it’s important that you take the necessary steps to ensure customer data is secure. This could mean using HTTPS protocols and other security measures, such as encrypted chats or two-factor authentication processes where appropriate. Without proper security protocols in place, customer information may be vulnerable, which could result in legal issues or reputational damage down the line if data is compromised or stolen in any way. 

 

4. Internal Resources

Implementing chat resources into any organization’s customer service departments can be a difficult task, as it presents unique staffing and training challenges. While chat adds a dynamic layer to customer engagement and provides the potential for fast turnaround solutions to customers’ needs, it requires extensive preparation and resources for success. When an organization is ready to introduce chat into its operation, it must have enough staff members trained with chat expertise so that customers receive the same level of quality experience with chat as they would over the phone or via email. With the added skills needed for successful chat operations, training staff becomes a priority. Without proper staffing and sufficient chat know-how among employees, chat use can quickly become a burden on an organization. Organizations looking to utilize chat as part of their customer service approach should be certain they have the right people in place to support their initiatives.

 

Taking It To The Next Level: Digital Transformation

Only 25% of companies currently use live chat, which means that 75% of businesses are not leveraging this opportunity and its associated benefits. If your organization is ready, now is the time to implement and execute a digital platform like live chat and get a leg up on the competition. 

Research shows that companies with well-developed digital platforms that use technology and automation generate an average of 8.1% revenue growth per year – twice that of their competitors. To learn about other opportunities to use digital technologies to create new customer experiences and streamline your marketing efforts, schedule a free 30-minute call with Brilliant Metrics.

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